This herd of charging elephant are actually charging towards water, after a long, hot, dusty day in the bush. In October, the hottest month in Southern Africa, the build up towards the rainy season is intense, and the contrast between the brooding, dark and stormy sky and the dry, dusty earth is huge. Water is a precious commodity and the wildlife compete for it every day, herds upon herds of elephant stampeding down to one pan can be witnessed every evening, and it is an awesome sight.
Elephants live in a matriarchal society, meaning they are lead by a dominant female. The mature males, or bulls, are either solitary or in bachelor herds, and move through the herds of females and babies, socializing and sniffing out any females in oestrus. They are generally relaxed and casual animals, until they reach a period of their life called ‘mustch’ where excess testosterone starts to course through their bodies, making them aggressive and super confident. It is a good idea to avoid and elephant bull in mustch!